Pastor Jace Hudson
Somehow Holy Week always sneaks up on me. Christmas seems to get a nice, long ramp-up, but Easter always seems to come out of nowhere.
Well, here Holy Week comes, and I don’t want it to surprise you! Instead, my aim is to help you make the most of it. The team over at Desiring God said it well when they wrote: “In the chaos of our increasingly fast-paced and hectic society, the annual coming of Holy Week each spring — March 20–27 this year — is a reminder to pause and ponder, to carefully mark each day, and not let this greatest of all weeks fly by like every other.”
Holy Week observes the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus. It begins with Palm Sunday, when Jesus rode triumphantly into Jerusalem, declaring Himself to be the King of the Jews. It leads up to Good Friday, when Jesus died on the cross to pay the penalty for our sin. And it climaxes with Easter, which celebrates the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.
This is no ordinary week! It is the main event of Christianity! Of course Christmas is special, but the incarnation means nothing for our salvation if Jesus did not die on the cross and rise from the dead.
Holy Week is an opportunity to experience the grace of God in remembering and embracing all of who Christ is and what He has done for us. So how can we make the most of Holy Week? Here are few suggestions.
Keep the Main Thing the Main Thing
It’s easy at Easter to get distracted by colorful eggs and yummy chocolate bunnies. Here’s a simple exhortation: Keep the main thing the main thing. Easter isn’t about chocolate; it’s about Christ. It isn’t about pastel eggs; it’s about a cross and an empty tomb. Resolve this Easter to keep the main thing the main thing.
Study the Savior
During Holy Week, be intentional to study the life, death, and resurrection of Christ Jesus our Savior. Mark out some time to read through a one of the gospel books of the Bible (Matthew, Mark, Luke, or John) or to study the events of each day during Holy Week. For those interested, here’s a pretty cool timeline that Bible Gateway put together (click through for more details).
Personally, I look forward to using this collection of morning and evening meditations that Desiring God put together. (The paperback can be purchased, or you can download the PDF file, EPUB file, or MOBI file for free.)
Holy Week is a great time to pursue greater holiness. Confront and confess the sins in your life that Christ died to save you from. Call on the Lord to help you put to death the passions of the flesh and for power to walk in the newness of life. Consider praying through Romans 6.
Witness to Others
The word describing evangelism in Acts is “witness.” Jesus’ disciples couldn’t help but witness to what they had seen and heard. Likewise, let all that God stirs up in you during Holy Week spill over into witnessing to what you have seen and heard. Tell the lost about how God has sent His Son to save them!
Come Join Us
We intentionally design our Palm Sunday, Good Friday, and Easter Sunday services to evoke that ancient question “What do these things mean?” (Ex. 12:25-27), to which we herald the answer. So make the most of Holy Week by observing the week with us. Moreover, many unchurched people are more open to the idea of attending church during Holy Week than they are at other times of the year. Why not take advantage of this opportunity to invite an unsaved or unchurched friend to church for Easter?
Holy Week is a special time for Christians to remember the victorious, saving power of Jesus. This year, let’s all be intentional to make the most of it by keeping the main thing the main thing, studying the Savior, pursing holiness, witnessing to others, and joining together to celebrate our Lord.